AMD's Open-Source Radeon Driver After Four Years
When beginning with OpenArena, which is the least demanding of the OpenGL benchmarks used, the Catalyst driver from 2009 remained faster than the open-source driver code as of 2011. The Radeon X800XL graphics card with Linux 3.1 and Gallium3D was running at approximately 63% the speed of the Catalyst driver while the Radeon X1800XT was up at 81% the speed of Catalyst 9.3. Disabling swap buffers wait had not caused any performance boost in this configuration.
World of Padman, which is powered by the ioquake3 engine like OpenArena, shed a slightly different story. The R400-based Radeon X800XL was now at 78% the speed of Catalyst and the R500-based Radeon X1800XT was actually faster on the open-source driver. The Radeon X1800XT was straight-up 25% faster on the latest open-source Linux driver code than the Catalyst driver right before its R500 series support was dropped. The rendering for both drivers in this game was also correct.
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